Priscilla Frank blogs about an exhibition of works by Alicia McCarthy and Jenny Sharaf at Johansson Projects, Oakland, on view through August 16, 2014.
Frank writes that the show "presents two radically different yet undeniably connecting visions of California art-making... McCarthy works in muted tones while Sharaf prefers wild, drippy neons. McCarthy works at a slow, meditative pace, letting every quiver and minor human error make its mark on the page. Sharaf prefers the rush, inviting her paints to ooze and melt on their own volition. McCarthy seems unselfconscious in her art-making while Sharaf dissects the role of the female artist even in abstraction... [this] joint exhibition buzzes and hums with the various paces and hues of the California landscape. Both artists work with pattern, repetition and accessible materials. McCarthy with the patient contemplation some may call 'zen,' but without any of the obnoxious undertones. Her crayon images work so softly and slowly they almost feel already forgotten, echoing the sentiments often spread about the quickly gentrifying Bay. Saraf lets SoCal influence trickle into her canvases, the melting displays capturing the strange space where neon billboards and flashing TV screens meet psychedelia."